Driver passes out in the drive-thru

OKEECHOBEE — A 25-year-old Texas man was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of driving under the influence when he was found passed out in the drive-thru line at McDonald’s.

According to an arrest report by Deputy DeMarcus Dixon, of the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO), at approximately 3:33 a.m. on Dec. 23, he responded to McDonald’s located in the 4100 block of U.S. 441 South in regards to a call for service.
Upon his arrival, Deputy Dixon saw a black, four-door Dodge pickup truck in the drive-thru line operated by a white male, who was passed out in the driver’s seat. The truck was blocking the drive-thru, preventing the restaurant from serving other customers.

Deputy Dixon stated in his report that the truck was still running and the driver’s side window was down. Deputy Nathaniel Mitchell reached inside of the truck and shut the engine off noted the report. Deputy Dixon reportedly recorded Deputy Mitchell’s attempt to wake the driver. After multiple attempts to wake him, the driver became alert to their presence. The man appeared confused, lethargic and had the odor of alcohol coming from his breath.

Deputy Mitchell reportedly asked for the man to present his driver’s license multiple times but he only gave the deputy a power inverter and a $100 bill. The report noted that the man was supposedly not aware of his surroundings or the lawful commands given to him and appeared impaired.

Deputy Dixon ceased recording and assisted the driver out of the vehicle as it was difficult for him to stand on his own. He needed to lean on the bed of the pickup truck to support himself, stated the report.

The report pointed out that when the man did eventually speak to law enforcement, his words were slurred and difficult to understand. The man appeared so impaired that field sobriety exercises were not administered due to possible injury if attempted. The man was placed under arrest for driving under the influence and his vehicle was towed by John’s Towing Service.

The report concluded that the man was transported to Okeechobee City Police Department (OCPD) for a breath sample to be collected by intoxilyzer operator, Officer Kelly Margerum. The man reportedly would not provide an adequate sample for the intoxilyzer to give a reliable result and was considered a refusal to provide a breath sample. The man was then transported and booked into the Okeechobee County Jail and his bond was set at $500.

The Lake Okeechobee News is published every Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and now includes news from around the lake every Wednesday.

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